Continuing Education – Evening Lecture
Engineering Ethics: Challenges for Innovation, Technology, and Society
Presenter: Sujata K. Bhatia, MD, PhD, PE
Drexel University, University of Delaware, John Hopkins University, and Harvard University
Tuesday, June 7, 2022
5:30pm-6:30pm – Presentation (Eastern time)
6:30pm-6:45pm – Q&A Session & Closing Remarks
PDH Credit: 1 credit
Location: Due to COVID, this will be an online presentation only
$10 each for attendees
How do engineering innovations change the nature of humanity and life on earth? How can engineers prepare themselves ethically to confront technological issues as diverse as gene editing, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, automation, cybersecurity, solar energy, carbon sequestration, clean water, and nuclear terror? Engineers, innovators, entrepreneurs, and designers have the skills to bring their visions to fruition. The engineer is both arrowsmith and archer, shaping the future direction of society. The key question for the engineer is: What kind of society am I creating?
As engineers, we cannot confuse technological advancement with ethical progress. If we fail to do so, then we are in danger of becoming “tools of our tools,” in the words of Henry David Thoreau. Since the ultimate goal of technology is to improve the quality of life for all, we must be cognizant of not only the technical feasibility of our designs, but also the social impact on humanity, as well as the environmental impact on our shared planet. Technology structures our communication, transportation, education, health care, and economy. Technology drives the distribution of food, water, energy, and shelter. Technology shapes the way we work, the way we are born, the way we die, and the relationships we form in between. Novel technologies can assuredly bring societal benefits, yet these technologies can also exaggerate societal disparities, leave out underserved communities, create moral and legal dilemmas, and remove human agency. New technologies can bring harm as well as good. Thus, addressing technological grand challenges will not only require technical competence but also deep ethical reflection, as emerging technologies have the potential to change the fabric of society.
Sujata K. Bhatia, MD, PhD, PE is a physician, bioengineer, and professionally licensed chemical engineer. She received her undergraduate degrees in chemical engineering, biology, and biochemistry from the University of Delaware in 1999, and she received her MD and PhD in bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 2003. Her experience spans industry and academia. From 2003 to 2011, she worked for the DuPont company, on the preclinical and clinical development of tissue adhesives for wound closure, microspheres for tumor treatment, and omega-3 fatty acids for cardiovascular health. From 2011 to 2016, she was a Lecturer and Assistant Director for Undergraduate Studies in Biomedical Engineering at Harvard University. From 2016 to 2021, she was a full Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Delaware. She is now Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the Drexel University College of Medicine, and Affiliated Faculty in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, as well as the School of Biomedical Engineering, Science, and Health Systems at Drexel University. She continues to teach courses for University of Delaware, Johns Hopkins University, and Harvard University.
Please register no later than Tuesday, June 7 at 12 noon. Cancellation requests received by the registration deadline will be fully refunded.
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